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There’s more than meets the eye at Sinks Canyon State Park. Situated at the base of the southern Wind River Mountains, the park contains a geological wonder called “The Sinks and Rise.” Popular for thousands of years due to this geological wonder, plentiful berries and wildlife, and brilliant scenery as far as the eye can see, the lower canyon was designated a state park in the early 1970s. Since then, the park has become a haven of tranquility for wandering souls and locals alike.
With rugged mountains soaring to the skies on both sides and a burbling river with splashes of colorful trees, the park offers new sights at every bend. You’ll love hiking trails in and around the beautiful park, spelunking deep into the mysterious Boulder Choke Cave, or climbing the limestone pathways of Sinks Canyon. A mere half hour’s drive away from the peaceful town of Arapahoe and forty minutes from the wonderfully artistic Riverton, the fun doesn’t have to stop at the park.
For years, a deep mystery hid in the waters of the park, as the lake would dissolve into low levels underneath the canyons at the area in the park known as “the Sinks” without leaving a clue as to where they'd gone. And although all suspicions pointed towards a section of the lake known as “The Rise,” there was no way to know for sure. This mystery was solved in an unusual way when the United States Geologic Service conducted a bright red dye test. Pouring fluorescent dye into the rushing waters, they eagerly waited with scientific instruments at the Rise. A full two hours later it was confirmed — the water was undergoing an exciting quarter of a mile journey underneath the caverns just to reappear at the Rise. This uniquely bizarre phenomenon is just one of the reasons camping at Sinks Canyon State Park is so popular.
While at the park, don one of the provided headlamps and your favorite pair of hiking shoes for the breathtaking guided tour into Boulder Choke Cave. You'll have the opportunity to view the Popo Agie River (which roughly translates to mean "gurgling river") while inside the cave. Have fun exploring geological treasures, numerous chambers, and more on this one-of-a-kind experience.
Over seven diverse hiking trails are begging to be explored by Sinks Canyon State Park campers, from the one-mile-long Popo Agie Nature Trail surrounded by aspen groves and sagebrush meadows, to the four-mile pine-infused Canyon Trail. Looking to get some climbing in? You’ve come to the right place, as Sinks Canyon is one of the country’s best spots. Join climbers from all over the world on any of the countless easy to extreme routes. Pathways range from limestone to sandstone and granite, with wild iris smatterings in some areas. Challenge yourself on a solo climb, or treat yourself to a guided expedition at this one-stop wonder, bringing you that true Wyoming flavor your heart desires.
Cradled in between mountains blanketed in forest, Lander campers will wake up in the morning with the fragrant scent of pine sweeping through their open windows. At the scenic Popo Agie Campground, there are 24 campsites to choose from, all of which offer spectacular views of the glamorous Sinks Canyons. Another five sites are available at Sawmill Campground.
Although the RV camping style is primitive, meaning there are no hookups provided, there's easy access to both hiking trails and the Popo Agie River. Each site also has its own picnic table and fire ring, with drinking water within walking distance. Pets are welcome here, as long as they're leashed and well-behaved. Firewood is provided by the campground, so just bring the marshmallows for an evening around the fire. Fall asleep with the comforting sound of rushing water, or stay awake to view the wide expanse of sparkling stars in the sky.
Although the historical town of Lander does boast the fabulous Sinks Canyon State Park, that’s not all it offers. While driving down US Hwy 287, take a slight detour off at the Museum of the American West. Showcasing both outdoor and indoor displays, take a step back in time as you experience the authentically rich history of pioneers and Native Americans alike. Or, take the drive over to Wyoming’s oldest history museum, the Fremont County Pioneer Museum, where you can indulge in hours of interactive fun.
Low on energy? Wash away your worries with a tall glass of sweet tea and fill up on a revitalizing meal at one of the many restaurants that Lander offers. From fancy cafes and American grill to fast-food sandwiches and flavorful Thai, there’s something for everyone. If you find your RV rental low on gas, you can fill up at a conveniently close gas station in town on the way back to your pre-planned night of stargazing. But before you go, consider heading over to Popo Agie Falls Trail, where you'll find spot after spot of brilliant scenery for snapping some family photos for your scrapbook. Wherever your adventure leads, let it begin by booking an RV rental in Fremont County today.